Hart County BOC Removes Oglesby-owned Ludi’s Diner as Food Vendor for County Jail

Commissioner RC Oglesby arrested Thursday under the RICO Act

Hart County Commissioners met in an emergency executive session Thursday evening with County attorney Walter Gordon regarding the food service for the jail inmates.

The County had contracted with Ludi’s Diner, which is owned and operated by RC Oglesby and his family, to provide meals for jail inmates.

Thursday evening, County Commissioners came out of executive session and voted to immediately remove Ludi’s as the food service for the County Jail.

They also voted to have County Administrator Terrell Partain work with the Jail Administrator to find a new food service vendor.

Meantime, developing this afternoon, RC Oglesby has been denied bond.

The investigation continues today into alleged violations of the federal RICO Act that resulted in the arrest of  Hart County Commissioner R.C. Oglesby, 65 and his son Stephen Oglesby, 41.

Also arrested Thursday were 38-year old Amy Oglesby, 21-year old Dasia Oglesby, and 28-year old Monique Oglesby.

According to Hart County Sheriff Mike Cleveland, the arrests came early Thursday morning when agents with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation along with Hart County Sheriff’s investigators, the Hartwell Police and agents with the Appalachian Regional Drug Enforcement Office raided the R&D Car wash on Highway 29, and the cafeteria at the Tenneco plant in Hartwell.

Search warrants were also executed at 414 Winding Way, and 130 North Forest Avenue in Hartwell.

Local, state, and agents raid R&D Car Wash in Hartwell Thursday morning

“We conducted search warrants at four locations at one time; R&D Car Wash, RC Oglesby’s home, Steven Oglesby’s home, and Tenneco where they serve meals out there. Arrest warrants were issued for RC Oglesby, Steven Oglesby and four others that we haven’t gotten right now. So, there’ll be more coming to jail from that,” Cleveland said Thursday morning.

Cleveland said Oglesby and his son have been charged under the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act or RICO on charges of the illegal use of EBT cards.  According to the Sheriff, Oglesby is accused of buying EBT cards for pennies on the dollar from legitimate owners of those cards, then using them to buy food for the family-owned restaurant, Ludi’s, located next to the car wash, and for the cafeteria food at Tenneco.

Oglesby also had the contract to provide food for Hart County Jail inmates.

“They’ll be charged under the RICO Act. There’ll be drug charges and misuse of EBT cards. That’s about it for the time being,” Cleveland said.

The Sheriff would not elaborate further on charges because the investigation is ongoing.

RC Oglesby is charged with 10 counts of Shoplifting, and 2 counts of Racketeering, Stephen Oglesby is charged with 3 counts of Racketeering, Amy Oglesby is charged with 10 counts of Racketeering, Dasia Oglesby has been charged with 1 count of Racketeering, and Monique Oglesby, is also charged with one count of Racketeering.

Agents with ARDEO concluded a lengthy investigation in Hart County that yielded cocaine and marijuana.  It was also determined that EBT card fraud was being utilized to defraud the State of Georgia.

Cleveland said his office along with ARDEO agents have been working for months to get a break in this case and when it came this week, he called in the GBI.

“We had been hearing that that was going on down there and it took a long time to get a break. When we got the break, the GBI came in. They headed up the investigation. They have more resources than we do. They did a fantastic job. They were patient and made a good case. I can’t say enough good things about them,” the Sheriff said.

Other agencies involved in the investigation, according to the GBI, included the Georgia Department of Revenue, Georgia Department of Agriculture, the Georgia Inspector General’s Office, the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office, and the Anderson Police Department.

R. C. Oglesby has been a Hart County Commissioner for District 1 since 1989.

His family runs the R&D Carwash, and owns a catering business that runs the employee cafeteria at the Tenneco plant.

Oglesby is also listed as the pastor of Antioch Baptist Church on the Hart County Commission web site, a member of the Hartwell Chamber of Commerce and a volunteer firefighter.

WLHR New also spoke to County Administrator Terrell Partain about Oglesby’s arrest.

He said County Attorney Walter Gordon is looking into whether or not Oglesby will legally be allowed to continue serving as a county commissioner.

Partain said he expects there to be an emergency called meeting in the coming days to discuss how the County needs to respond to this latest development.

WLHR News will continue to follow this story and bring you the latest information as it becomes available.